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Old 14th Jul 2011, 19:47   #1
GuilleAcoustic
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Retrocade - retro arcade stick

Hi mates,

here's a project log I had in mind since a long time. And I'm finally taking the time to build it. This will be done in two steps.

- First and more important : prototyping
- Second : Final build

The prototyping mainly lies in finding the perfect angle for the top panel to allow long long long play time. I'll build an adjustable top panel and then will have ..... oh my god that's horrible ..... I will have to play !!

Here are the selected test titles :

- Metal Slug X (the best one IMHO)



- King of fighter 98' (again the best one)



- Last blade 2



- Wind jammers (nom nom nom, simple but addictive)



- some unselected shoot them up (Nam 1945, Mars matrix, etc..)



The final design will looks like that :



Materials will be a full waxed concrete housing and a lackered wooden top panel. Stick and buttons will all be Sanwa branded, all connected to a Arcade controller (like I-PAC for example)

http://www.ultimarc.com/ipac1.html

Since the housing will be made of concrete (to weighten the whole damn thing), I need to build a prototype to determine the best angle for the top panel, before making a mold for the concrete.

For the prototype use, I'll be using spare parts from my dead X-Arcade stick (the controller is dead, resulting in keyboard buffer overflows). I'm not a big fan of this stick, and that's the reson why I'm building one from scratch (prefer ball shaped stick to pear shaped stick)

Here is the organ donator (sorry, pics been taken from my cellphone)









The faultry controller :



Next step, the prototype housing ... coming in a few days

Stay tuned
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Last edited by GuilleAcoustic; 17th Jul 2011 at 14:27.
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Old 15th Jul 2011, 21:14   #2
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Hi there,

a little update following my link sharing attitude.

The following link http://www.slagcoin.com/joystick/introduction.html can be considered as the DIY arcade stick bible. It explains everything you need to build your very own stick (from the component brand comparison to the panel or box layout). Everything is compared and explained step by step, please click on all icons from the top banner.

Stay tuned
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Old 16th Jul 2011, 20:45   #3
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Hi mates,

daily update (I hope it'll be daily). By advance, sorry for the cellphone pictures. I'm in holyday and not home, so slow update and no sketchup (Athlon 64 3500+ @ 2.2GHz, 1 GB Corsair DDR400 cas 1.5, 10 years old geForce 4 TI 4200 64mo).

Finished dimanteling the X-arcade sitck. Buttons and sticks where glued to the top panel. A real pain in the arsh to remove them. Two hours of battling and a few scars later, I'm done with the stripping.

What do we have there :

- 2 Happ's sticks (not that good, but enough for testing)
- 17 black + 2 white + 2 player select Happ's push buttons (again good enough for testing
- 1 keyboard emulator PCB (laggy one but I only want to test layout and panel angle)













I've printed the final 2 layouts. The first one has 8 buttons and the second one has 7 buttons. I do not really need 8 buttons (only 6 for Street fighter like games and 4 for SNK games), but the layout is really different. So 2 prototypes will be build to find out the less stressing one, to allow long play sessions.





Here is a quick fitting test to check that buttons and sticks fit on the selected layout :





And a comparison with my old dead companion :



Tomorrow work :

- Build a variable angle box
- Build the 2 prototype top panels (7 and 8 buttons)

Stay tuned
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Old 16th Jul 2011, 21:22   #4
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will be watching this one, i'm a huge fan of arcades myself, et très précisément la série des metal slug !!
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Old 17th Jul 2011, 14:30   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dark~3nergy View Post
will be watching this one, i'm a huge fan of arcades myself, et très précisément la série des metal slug !!
Très précisément en effet ... and an arcade stick suite all those marvellous games so much more than keyboard or gamepad (even if I'm used to spawn KOF combo with a keyboard ).

Edit :

Been drilling holes this evening ... and one broken mesh, one broken hole saw and one scar later ...



The test panel is almost done ... just have to make the hole for the stick ... but the hole saw is dead. I'd better buy better quality ones to my wife's dad , damn hard to make a good job with bad tools .

Been playing with the buttons, pressing them over and over and I have to say that this layout is very pleasant and not stressing at all. I'll keep the same length under them as it is nice to have it to rest the hand palm.

I'll order the Sanwa stick and the Sanwa buttons next week. They are a little bit smaller than those I use for the test, but are the SOTA in arcade gaming.

Stay tuned
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Last edited by GuilleAcoustic; 17th Jul 2011 at 22:13.
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Old 26th Jul 2011, 22:46   #6
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Hi mates,

just bought a new hole saw and found some times to work on this project. Drilled some holes and I have to say that it is better with nice tools.











After a few hours spent playing Street fighter III : 3rd impact, I have to say that it would be more comfortable with the stick a few centimeters more to the left.

I'm also wondering if it is worth a concrete housing. With only the buttons, stick and half the housing (using low thickness wood), the system weights quite a lot.

With thicker real wood and a latex feet, I'm sure it won't move an inch.

stay tuned
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Old 21st Oct 2011, 00:10   #7
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Concrete is probably overkill. If you need weight It just recommend some lead plugs glued inside the unused areas. Heavy wood and decent feet will help a lot, yeah!.
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Old 21st Oct 2011, 03:04   #8
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That's awesome!!

So what are you going to do with the extra buttons? use them as spares in case if one of those buttons basically die?
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Old 21st Oct 2011, 09:59   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmcgrath View Post
Concrete is probably overkill. If you need weight It just recommend some lead plugs glued inside the unused areas. Heavy wood and decent feet will help a lot, yeah!.
Thanks a lot. Long time I didn't opened this thread. Concrete was my first idea, before I start building the first prototype. Now, with just the stick and the buttons plus the top panel .... it's already damn heavy ! I'll go with heavy wood and a thick alu bottom panel + rubber feet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gaming_freak_10 View Post
That's awesome!!

So what are you going to do with the extra buttons? use them as spares in case if one of those buttons basically die?
Thank mate . All this hardware is only a temporary one. I'll order full Sanwa (stick + button) high end arcade parts and try to find some time to finish this as the prototype is done and validated (was hard to spend all those hours playing at fighting games ).

I'll build 2 other sticks for my nephews with my prototyping parts.
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Old 22nd Oct 2011, 20:10   #10
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Do ya mind sending me the old buttons and stuff? that way it wont be wasted lol
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Old 24th Oct 2011, 13:04   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gaming_freak_10 View Post
Do ya mind sending me the old buttons and stuff? that way it wont be wasted lol
Sorry, but they will be used to build 2 arcade stick for my nephews.

I've ordered the Sanwa buttons and stick and made a first attempt for the cover artwork :



Buttons and stick are Dark Hai (grey) color :



What do you think of it ?
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